Friday, September 21, 2012
Montana's outdoor crime-stopper help line, TIP-MONT, has a new online option to report poachers and other hunting-season violators.
"TIP-MONT online is best used to report observations that might help solve a violation that has already occurred," said Brian Shinn, FWP's TIP-MONT coordinator. "The TIP-MONT toll-free number—1-800-TIP-MONT or 1-800-847-6668—is the best way to report crimes that are in progress, or where immediate assistance is needed."
Shinn said that while the online service isn't a real-time TIP-MONT connection, the reports are checked several times a week. Online TIP-MONT reports remain confidential and are managed under the same guidelines that protect all crime-stopper callers.
TIP-MONT callers most often report violations of Montana's hunting rules and regulations. Other important calls pertain to vandalism at Montana state parks and on public lands.
Here are some of the most common hunting season violations reported:
- failure to obtain permission from landowners before hunting on private property.
- wasting any part of a game animal suitable for food.
- failure to properly validate a license or tag, or securely fasten it visibly to a game. animal immediately after it is taken and before it is moved or transported from the kill site.
- taking game from the wrong hunting district.
- using someone else's tag on a harvest game animal.
- failure to leave evidence of sex attached.
Callers to 1-800-TIP-MONT, and those who file reports online, may remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash award of up to $1,000 if the information leads to a conviction.